It probably doesn’t matter what I think of Gantz, but if you’re interested, check out the latest Flipped over at The Comics Reporter.
This entry was posted on Monday, July 14th, 2008 at 4:18 pm and is filed under Flipped. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
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First off, very good article as always. Now to complain: I really don’t see how Kurosaki could be considered more mature than Gantz; its a fun little serial with the occasional moral dilemma, but those are mostly just for show and don’t fully utilize the potential that kind of story has IMO. I personally don’t see Gantz being any more “mature” either, though I do think the author deserves credit for creating realistic characters to the point of un-likability and then develop them into being who you empathize with (in case your wondering, the artificiality of the violence fades and there is real emotional impact in subsequent volumes). I’m only a minor fan of both properties and I really don’t see them being too much different from one another other than Gantz being unapologetically trashy.
Because of just how many of their titles are genre works I think its all too common for people to dismiss certain of Darkhorse’s better titles as cheap, grinehouse-style entertainment, which is understandable considering how many B-manga they do release. Blade of the Immortal is a good example, as it started out a simple (but entertaining) samurai/horror romp but by the third volume had developed into a morally ambiguous revenge tragedy with some of the best characterizations, human drama and cinematic storytelling out there. Berserk’s initial volumes were mediocre at best (some would call them outright repulsive) but that’s turned into what I think is the best fantasy manga available in English (it still lacks Samura’s skill at avoiding overly exploitative content though).
And to clarify: I’m not hating on “B-manga,” as I’ve bought at least a volume of nearly every Kazuo Koike manga released in English (yes, even Wounded Man).
We’ll probably have to agree to disagree about the relative maturity of Kurosagi. I tend to think the moral issues there do amount to more than just window dressing, especially in the long-form second volume. But I think it’s perfectly fair to fall on the other side of the argument. (MPD Psycho is very much in the gray area for me. Sometimes I think it lives up to its potential, and sometimes it just strikes me as manipulative cheese.)
And really, I’m not hating on B-manga either. I think it’s a tragedy that DMP didn’t publish more Bambi and Her Pink Gun, and I think stuff like Lady Snowblood is terrifically sleek for what it is.
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